Uddhav cites 'split two parties' comment by Fadnavis to counter Shah

Shiv Sena (UBT) chief also hits out at PM Modi's statement that opposition parties will regret raising the electoral bonds issue

Uddhav Thackeray (right) in a Mumbai local train (photo: PTI)
Uddhav Thackeray (right) in a Mumbai local train (photo: PTI)


Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Uddhav Thackeray on Monday countered Union home minister Amit Shah, who had said a day earlier that the BJP had not engineered splits in the Shiv Sena and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), by citing Maharashtra deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis' recent "came back after splitting two parties" statement.

Addressing a poll rally at Sakoli town in Bhandara district of Maharashtra on Sunday, Shah had claimed that the Shiv Sena and NCP split owing to "Uddhav's love for his son (Aaditya Thackeray, an MLA) and Sharad Pawar's love for his daughter (Baramati MP Supriya Sule)".

Asked about the statement, Thackeray said, "Amit Shah should not forget that his party colleague Devendra Fadnavis had proudly claimed he came back to power by breaking two parties. Shah and his party leaders must at least maintain a common political line."

On 18 March, Fadnavis had countered the jibes he was subjected to over his "I will be back" 2019 Assembly poll campaign line by claiming that he did return to power (in June 2022 following the rebellion by Eknath Shinde) and that too "after splitting two parties".

The Shiv Sena split in June 2022, causing the collapse of Thackeray's Maha Vikas Aghadi government, while the Sharad Pawar-founded NCP broke into two factions after his nephew Ajit Pawar joined the ruling alliance in July 2023.

Hitting out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi's statement that opposition parties will regret raising the electoral bonds issue, Thackeray said the situation was such that one would regret being with the ruling party.

"We have recently realised their policy of corruption and wondered how we remained with them for such a long period," Thackeray said about his party's alliance of several decades with the BJP, which broke after the 2019 Assembly polls.

Speaking on the seat-sharing issues within the Maha Vikas Aghadi, Thackeray cautioned his ally Congress over the situation related to the Sangli Lok Sabha seat.

Both parties wanted to contest the seat, but the Shiv Sena (UBT) took the lead by announcing the candidature of wrestler Chandrahar Patil. However, disgruntled local Congress leader Vishal Patil is likely to throw his hat in the ring.

"Shiv Sena won Ramtek and Kolhapur Lok Sabha seats in 2019, but we gave them to the Congress. We would have won Amravati this time but we gave it to our ally," Thackeray said.

Each party must have a strong leadership to ensure workers toe the official line, since the main aim is to defeat the ruling dispensation, Thackeray asserted. He added that the MVA will release a state-specific manifesto and hold a joint rally once the Congress announces names for the remaining seats it is contesting.

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